"It's special for him," Showalter said. "It's been a long road for him, and I'm proud of him. He never gave in, and he's getting a reward for his work. I talked to our guys at Triple-A -- the coordinators -- and they thought he was worthy of the opportunity. We wanted to get Ryan [Adams] playing every day.
"I'm proud of him, regardless of what happens. Step back for a second and realize that he's 27, and he's been grinding it. He was having a good year down there, playing all over the place for them."
Davis, who didn't receive a big league Spring Training invite, had his contract selected from Triple-A Norfolk on Saturday. He hit .284 (52-for-183) with five home runs and 24 RBIs in 49 games at Norfolk. A versatile left-handed bat, Davis can play shortstop, second base and outfield.
Davis went 0-4 with a strikeout in the debut, and made a costly error in the fifth inning when he let a ground ball go through his legs. The miscue allowed the tying and eventual winning run to score.